Make creamy roasted red pepper pasta for a quick weeknight meal. It comes together in under 30 minutes with an option to add meat or leave it vegetarian.

Creamy Roasted Red Pepper Pasta

Make creamy roasted red pepper pasta for a quick weeknight meal. It comes together in under 30 minutes with an option to add meat or leave it vegetarian.

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During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, we were trying to use up any food we had in the kitchen before going to the grocery store. We also like to do this before vacation by having a pantry week. This is a great recipe to make on a busy weeknight as it makes a quick dinner.

You have the option to add meat if you like. Justin added some ground Italian sausage to his just before serving. The boys and I preferred it as a meatless meal so ate it just like this. If you plan to add meat, you’ll want to brown it in a large skillet over medium-high heat until cooked through.

Whether you make it with or without meat, this makes a delicious creamy sauce to mix with the cooked pasta. The only thing we served it with was a side of fresh bread with butter. You can also add fresh herbs, such as fresh basil or fresh parsley, for a garnish at the end.

For a thicker, creamier sauce, you could substitute the milk for heavy cream. I find this makes such a thick sauce, though, it doesn’t always mix into the pasta very well. If you do this, I suggest also adding a cup of pasta water or chicken broth to thin it out.

Creamy red pepper pasta can be made vegan, but you would have to make a lot of substitutes:

  • Substitute almond milk, coconut milk, or any other non-dairy milk for the whole milk (I did this in mine using almond milk)
  • Use a vegan cream cheese alternative
  • Use nutritional yeast in place of the parmesan cheese, just lower it to closer to 1/4 cup

Roasted peppers are easy to find with jarred condiments such as pickles. Otherwise, check near the canned vegetables. Next time, I want to get fresh peppers and try to make our own roasted red peppers. I did it once before when making roasted red pepper hummus and it was delicious. But, that takes longer meaning this isn’t a quick meal if I do that. At one time, we grew our own peppers, and that was the best because they were as fresh as could be.

Creamy Roasted Red Pepper Pasta Step by Step

Ingredients

  • 8 oz elbow noodles, about 1 1/2 cups
  • 1 cup milk
  • 4 oz cream cheese
  • 1/2 tsp garlic, minced, or 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 tbsp Italian seasoning
  • 4 oz roasted red peppers
  • 2 oz spinach leaves
  • 1 tsp black pepper

Preparation

Cook the pasta in a large pot of salted water according to the package directions until al dente.

Meanwhile, while the pasta cooks, in a medium saucepan, heat the milk over medium heat until just warm.

Add the cream cheese and garlic to the milk.

Cook, stirring constantly, until the cream cheese melts, about 3-5 minutes.

Add the parmesan cheese and Italian seasoning, stirring until the cheese is completely melted.

Add the roasted red peppers and spinach, stirring until the spinach has wilted, about 5 minutes.

Pour the drained pasta into the cheese sauce and gently fold it in.

Sprinkle with the pepper and stir.

Garnish with extra parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes if desired.

Creamy Roasted Red Pepper Pasta Leftovers

Storage: Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator once cooled to room temperature.

Reheating: When reheating pasta, I like to add a splash of water or chicken broth or vegetable broth to the pasta before reheating. This keeps it from getting dry. Then you can reheat in a small pot on the stove over medium-low heat or in the microwave.

Freezing: When made as-is, this pasta won’t freeze well. The red pepper pasta sauce will break down in the freezer.

Recipe

Originally Published On: January 2, 2023

Creamy Red Pepper Pasta with a fork and two slices of toasted bread on a round brown plate with another serving and a glass of water behind on a brown surface

Creamy Roasted Red Pepper Pasta

Make creamy roasted red pepper pasta for a quick weeknight meal. It comes together in under 30 minutes with an option to add meat or leave it vegetarian.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course:
Main Dish
Cuisine:
American
Diet
Vegetarian
Keyword:
meatless
|
pasta
|
red peppers
|
roasted red bell peppers
|
roasted red peppers
|
vegetarian
Dietary Needs:
Egg-Free
|
Nut-Free
Servings: 4
5 from 5 votes

Ingredients

  • 8 oz elbow noodles (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 1 cup milk
  • 4 oz cream cheese
  • 1/2 tsp garlic (minced, or 2 cloves of garlic)
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese (grated)
  • 1 tbsp Italian seasoning
  • 4 oz roasted red peppers
  • 2 oz spinach leaves
  • 1 tsp black pepper

Instructions

  • Cook the pasta in a large pot of salted water according to the package directions until al dente
  • Meanwhile, while the pasta cooks, in a medium saucepan, heat the milk over medium heat until just warm
  • Add the cream cheese and garlic to the milk
  • Cook, stirring constantly, until the cream cheese melts, about 3-5 minutes
  • Add the parmesan cheese and Italian seasoning, stirring until the cheese is completely melted
  • Add the roasted red peppers and spinach, stirring until the spinach has wilted, about 5 minutes
  • Pour the drained pasta into the cheese sauce and gently fold it in
  • Sprinkle with the pepper and stir
  • Garnish with extra parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes if desired
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Nutrition Facts
Creamy Roasted Red Pepper Pasta
Amount Per Serving (1 cup)
Calories 458 Calories from Fat 171
% Daily Value*
Fat 19g29%
Saturated Fat 11g55%
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 5g
Cholesterol 53mg18%
Sodium 916mg38%
Potassium 423mg12%
Carbohydrates 50g17%
Fiber 3g12%
Sugar 6g7%
Protein 21g42%
Vitamin A 2175IU44%
Vitamin C 17mg21%
Calcium 459mg46%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

All nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutrition content will vary based on brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes, and more.

11 thoughts on “Creamy Roasted Red Pepper Pasta”

  1. 5 stars
    I consume more pasta than I should, but it has always been a go- to food item for me. I love cheese and red peppers, so this sounds like a sure winner for me.

  2. This sounds so delicious! And as a vegetarian, I appreciate meat-free options. I’m definitely making this!

  3. I’ve never tried red pepper with pasta before. But it looks yummy and it’s easy to make it. We have the ingredients and will try it with my partner. Thank you for sharing!

  4. Bedabrata Chakraborty

    5 stars
    Love the pasta recipe especially since it is tough to find vegetarian recipes for this dish I have a quick hack about reheating. Use a vegetable steamer for reviving the leftover.

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